High school student builds website to serve as a leading place for coronavirus information

Along with his concern for the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Avi Schiffmann was concerned about the spread of misinformation. So the 17-year-old from just outside Seattle set out to make a website that pulls together the latest and most accurate data about the epidemic — and he’s heard from people around the world about how useful his effort has been.

Schiffmann, a junior at Mercer Island High School who is in the Running Start program at Bellevue College, first started working on his coronavirus information website — ncov2019.live — in early January when there were fewer than 1,000 confirmed cases and it hadn’t yet spread outside of China.

The site’s simple homepage consists of quick facts that are updated every 10 minutes, including total confirmed cases, total deaths, countries infected and more. A column lists the outbreak numbers for provinces and cities in China and another column breaks out data for other countries. An update on the site says a new column is coming that will list individual U.S. states, and also translate the information in more than 10 languages.

The site also contains information on how to prepare if coronavirus impacts your area and how to prevent catching the virus. An interactive map Google map (below) crowdsourced by another group of volunteers is also embedded on the site and there’s a Twitter feed of the latest alerts and breaking news, and more.